Secret Chiefs 3

Video: Secret Chiefs 3 tour film

Last winter, Secret Chiefs 3 — the East-meets-West super-group known for its mysteriously cloaked and ever-rotating lineup led by guitarist Trey Spruance of Mr. Bungle and Faith No More — took off for a European tour with some folks from the APATT Orchestra, a large-scale ensemble that seeks unusual settings for collaborations with other artists.

In a new hour-long tour film, you can catch all the on- and off-stage adventures of SC3 and APATT as they bring their wild instrumentation abroad. Adventures include, but are not limited to, parades with giant motorized elephants, steam-punk carousels, and unsuccessful rock-on-string fights.

50 Unheralded Albums from 2011

50 Unheralded Albums from 2011

In just one more trip around the sun, another swarm of immensely talented but under-recognized musicians has harnessed its collective talents and discharged its creations into the void. This list is but one fraction of those dedicated individuals who caught our ears with some serious jams.

Kayo Dot

Record Review: Kayo Dot’s Stained Glass EP

Kayo Dot: Stained Glass EPKayo Dot: Stained Glass EP (Hydra Head, 1/11/11)

Kayo Dot: “Stained Glass” excerpt
[audio:|titles=Kayo Dot: “Stained Glass” excerpt]

Toby Driver and his rotating cast of fellow multi-instrumentalists in Kayo Dot have always embraced the dizzying difficulty of modern composition and the wandering feeling that comes with 10-minute-plus art-rock songs. The heavier moments of its 2003 debut, Choirs Of The Eye (and of Driver’s previous band, Maudlin of the Well), might have tempted some to think of Kayo Dot as a prog-metal outfit, but even then, it wasn’t that simple.

Driver seems to be able to constantly mutate what’s at the center of his music — sometimes tasteful strings, sometimes creepily melodic electric guitar, but often a beautiful, tense mesh of fragments. The lone 20-minute track that is the new Stained Glass EP revels in that unique flexibility.

100 Unheralded Albums from 2010

Among the thousands of under-appreciated or under-publicized albums that were released in 2010, hundreds became our favorites and were presented in ALARM and on Of those, we pared down to 100 outstanding releases, leaving no genre unexplored in our list of this year’s overlooked gems.

Secret Chiefs 3 Announces New Album of Italian Horror Inspirations

With a history that has spanned Indian, Persian, surf, metal, spaghetti western, and electronic music — and so much more — Trey Spruance‘s unparalleled Secret Chiefs 3 is releasing a new album in late May, this time inspired by the Italian giallo horror/erotica films of the 1960s and ’70s.

Weekly Music News Roundup

Announcements are made for new albums from Irepress, Karl Sanders, Black Moth Super Rainbow, and Staff Benda Bilili — a group of paraplegic Congolese street musicians.

Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey releases its new studio album for free; Secret Chiefs 3 announces a concert DVD; Les Claypool announces an outstanding mini festival that will be in a town near you. This and more after the jump.

ALARM’s Top 10 Albums of 2008

Our list of favorites from last year includes devastating dub metal, organ-fueled psychedelic grind, a re-released classic-rock gem from nearly four decades ago, an international assemblage of punk-infused field recordings, and an Indian/surf/metal take on John Zorn‘s Masada material.